I am alive.
Thanks for asking.
Seriously. The thirty bazillion messages you guys have sent me over the past three weeks have been a nice interruption from my days of working and pretending to unpack.
I live in Raleigh now. I have a real job. Oh. And an iPhone.
Now. I don’t want to come down on you too hard. After all, this is the first TooSoxy you’ve had in a month. But. I feel some criticism is warranted.
Ahem. I’ll try to stay calm. I’ll try-
Really, guys? Really? REALLY? Re-frickingeallllyyyyy?
Tim Wakefield?! Jason Varitek???? WHITNEY FRICKING HOUSTON????
What did you guys NOT destroy while I was gone? Who’s next? Judi Dench? (Please, GOD, NOT JUDI. TAKE ANDERSON COOPER. Or one of the Real Housewives!)
I just don’t know what to say to you people.
That’s why I’ve been absent. It’s not me. It’s YOU.
And your POOR stewardship of life and things.
So. Jason Varitek, hmm? I cried. A lot. I mean, part of it was that the night Jason Varitek announced his retirement was the night my car broke.
So begins the story of operation Red Sox friend hunt. Ahem. Imagine me saying this in a snazzy radio voice, k?
So, I heard of this group. The Triangle Red Sox Nation, right? So, I thought, what a perfect way to start my Raleigh friend hunt! God, of course, had other plans.
God killed the electric system on my car.
Let’s just say after my parking lot temper tantrum, Triangle Red Sox Nation will remember me…
Oh. I went on a date with a Red Sox fan. Well. Um. It was kind of a date. And another one with this really Democraty guy. That was different. It kind of felt like I was on a date with the news.
Oh. And I met this Stankee fan who is also a UNC fan and it was a thing.
There are lots of things.
I’ve gotten really good at this unpacking thing, for example.
See, the cool thing about living by yourself in an apartment with five closets is… you can do THIS.
oh! And This.
SERIOUSLY. TIM WAKEFIELD? He was our INSURANCE. Don’t you people listen to ANYTHING I say?
Oh. And I’m still seeing the perfect guy. The one who lives in Boone. But you know. By seeing, I mean NOT seeing. Since he’s in Boone. And I’m in Raleigh, the land of traffic circles where people are consistently confused by traffic circles. And he seems intrigued by the fact that, come April, I’ll hulk up into the Soxzombie. I don’t think he believes me, actually. I told him about that one time I accidentally… um… dropped that napkin dispenser on that one guy…
I think he doubts my hulkness.
I haven’t been watching spring training. Um.
And I haven’t been my usual Soxzombieness. Because I work a lot.
Oh, wow. He’s really gone, isn’t he?
Are we sure? I mean… um…
I’m sorry. I’ve missed a month. I have to go watch Bodyguard on repeat with an Edy’s pint. Excuse me.
Our father, Tim Wakefield, hallowed be his pitch… may be hitting the National League.
Is it wrong to kind of want to see that happen because Timmy-at-the-bat sounds entertaining? Oh. Right. National League. As in NOT IN BOSTON. I can feel the gods themselves trembling, can’t you?
Timmy, Timmy, Timmy. I know that you are (well) old enough to make your own decision, but let me tell you what I, the official spokesman today (why not?) for Red Sox Nation has to say… You could retire… OR-
Go to spring training as a non-roster player!
Do it, Timmy, and here’s why-
You come through in a clutch. You know it. We know it. Benny C knows it.
We’re going to need your clutch powers this summer. We’ve got Dice-K (who, let’s be honest, could melt like Elphaba by May). We’ve got Bard (who, let’s be honest, is so going to wind up back in the bullpen. I hope I’m wrong). We’ve got Josh Beckett (who, let’s be honest, is one beer can away from punching that sexy pitch fist through the dugout). And Buccholz (who I predict will break in June). And then we’ve got the bargain binners and the criminals (Vincente, you know they’re alllllll thinking it). And let’s be honest. We’re not even going to have Jason Varitek and his stern, but firm looks and worldly control over all things pitchtastic. Children need a father figure, Timmy. And trust me, our bullpen/rotation is full of CHILDREN. Without you, they’ll be awash in a sea of confusion and cupcakes (see, I predict cupcakes will be the beer-chicken of 2012).
Stay. Have a shot at the Clemens record. Stay. Retire in a uniform. Stay. Continue to have fans that don’t just count on you for strikes- but respect you for decades of service.
Or go. Go to the National Leagues. Hang out. Tell all your “back in my day” stories to an inattentive audience. And have to move. Moving, Tim, SUCKS. There’s packing. And box finding. And packing. And not ALL liquor stores will give you boxes. And there’s u-haul renting. And deposit paying. And lease get-outing. And before you know it, you have your first gray hair. Well, you think it’s yours. It could be your dog’s. You both have very similar hair. And she does steal your hair brush. And why did you buy all those canned black beans anyway? You can’t throw them away. They’re food. You can’t give them to the poor because you’re poor. They’re too heavy for the crappy boxes. And damnit, BOONE. WHY ARE YOU SO COLD?
What were we talking about again?
DON’T LEAVE US, TIM WAKEFIELD!!!!!
“We’re discussing the options — and he has some options — and over the next few days, we’re going to try to figure it out,” agent Barry Meister said by phone today. “These next few days is just a period of introspection, where he’s trying to decide what to do, whether to play, who to play for.”
Meister is a great last name. I think it means master.
Barry Meister won’t pack up your boxes for you, Tim Wakefield.
And you’re old. And you probably have a bad back. You probably got it from helping the aliens craft the pyramids during your teenage years. Carrying that sleeper loveseat down all those stairs in the snow is REALLY going to suck for you.
So, Soxies! What are your thoughts on Timmy? Recount your memories- and maybe, together, we’ll convince daddy to stay.
PS- It’s not official, but I found a smarmy Timmy fan page. I mean, MY blog has more visitors… but…
Tim Wakefield, aka Father Time- as the media would have you believe, wants another year. See, Wake’s the definition of a utility player- the first to raise his hand and literally the last to leave the bullpen. He’s like our “Wonder Years” dad. You know. But happier and slightly less curmudgeonly. There with supportive words of wisdom and the occasional scowling wisecrack. Working quietly in the background. But highlighted in select episodes so that we’ll be guilted into telling our own fathers “thank you?” But, you know, not always integral to the front-and-center Fred Savage-Winnie plot today?
In other words, Tim Wakefield is a workhorse. Just one that may be working at spending his money next season, not getting ours…
“I just saw that (Jorge) Posada retired, you know it’s something that my wife and I need to talk about,” Wakefield said, according to FloridaToday.com. “I’d probably need to talk about it with my kids, too. Ultimately, I would like to obviously play for the Boston Red Sox for one more year and see where it goes.”
Anyone else imagine his voice all mopey when he says that?
Okay. Now imagine it in this voice!
With the Sox since 1995. I was eleven. MLB debut in 1992. I was six. 200 wins. 2,156 strikeouts. A bazillion smiles.
Despite suffering through one of his worst seasons of an otherwise solid and sometimes spectacular career, the Eau Gallie High graduate and Florida Tech baseball standout is convinced he can still help a team win.
And it’s not that repetitive denial that has-beens repeat on their Facebook and Twitter feeds. Wake DOES have stones left.
It’s just- do those stones fit into our ball park and our ALREADY cramped pen?
“There have been a number of clubs who have called, who have an interest in signing me but I’m kind of just weighing my options right now,” he said, obviously waiting and hoping that Boston will make an offer. “I think I can be a valuable asset to them as an insurance policy, you know a fifth or sixth starter or if something doesn’t pan out for some of the guys they have already penciled in to the rotation. You know that’s kind of been my job these last two years; I don’t have a problem doing that.”
Getting past the condescension of the author’s “obviously waiting” remark (I hate condescending reporters, don’t you?)… He knows his value. As an insurance policy.
If the choices for No. 5 starter come down to reclamation projects like Aaron Cook, Carlos Silva and Vicente Padilla, or a number of other untested or questionable choices (Junichi Tazawa is one), is Wakefield really so undesirable?
Bobby Valentine has already said he cannot imagine Wakefield competing for a job. That might sound cold, but whatever the Red Sox owe Wakefield (and a roster spot is not on the list), the newly hired Valentine owes him nothing.
He’s not asking to take the lead. He’s not asking for $$$. He’s not asking for fame. He’s just asking to keep playing baseball, with a humility that SOME people (ahem, Lackey. Papelbon. Probably Jacoby next year) could learn from…
And even at 45-he can still be a benefit. My thoughts? We hold onto him. Not make him part of our regular rotation. Not make him part of our bullpen. But keep him for a clutch moment when everyone’s arm is shot. Going to happen. Late this summer when the rotation is tired and we need a miracle. A hero. Someone with a good attitude. Because when Tim does rise from the ashes of everyone else’s failure- that’s when he pulls it out. That’s when he shines. And that’s when debates start about his robotness. Save him for when we need him. And let him retire in a Sox jersey. He’s earned it.
And seriously, Benny C. Call. Him. Back.
You NEVER forget to call your father. Bad things happen, Ben Cherington. Bad things. He’ll just show up at your doorstep. He’ll just show up. And demand to see your packing progress. And when you don’t have packing progress, he’ll compensate by packing your coffee. And you won’t be able to find it. And you’ll have to go to a gas station Monday morning. A GAS STATION. That’s $1.99 you’ll NEVER get back, Ben.
PS- and this is random- but I miss Mike Lowell. I miss Mike Lowell so much that it hurts sometimes.
Mike Lowell would NEVER have let Soxsplosion happen. No, sir. Not Mike Lowell…
I’m okay… I’m okay…
In less somber news (because that was somber, man), Curt Schilling is expressing his opinions again. This time about something waaay more relevant than his usual cup of bitters. He’s defending something video gamey that I’ve never heard of. Whatever, Curt. Did you know he owned a video game studio? Did you care?
HuffPost released an interesting list today- the 10 worst contracts in baseball. Carl Crawford is #10. John Lackey is #6. Alex Rodriguez is #3.
There’s no way for the Yankees to get out from under a contract that will pay A-Rod $21 million during the season he turns 42. And then there’s the $30 million in home run bonuses he stands to earn. The Yankees print money, but yikes!
Jason Werth is #1? Really?
Manny Ramirez, Juice King, may be back in the MLB fold, as the A’s are rumored to crave juice… Be a part of the collective eye roll in 3, 2, 1… NOW.
MLB is reeealllyyyy struggling for news. So they popped up a craptastic piece about how we don’t always know who wins or loses pre-season. Wow with the ace reporting, skip. We allllll know which team this article aims to scrutinize passive aggressively.
Roy Oswalt, enjoying the attention, clearly, is going to milk it just a little bit longer before taking a deal with (probably) the Cardinals.
And here’s a theory about putting Jose Iglesias in the shortstop dance.
So. How’s your Monday?
I’d quit again, if I could.
Is a dramatic exit redundant when you’ve already put in your two weeks? I think it might be time to stage “I quit: The Musical.” I’m good on vocals, but I’m going to need a five string…
I think I get it. I think I get why it seems to irritate these baseball players to be offered loads of money to move to a new city and play a game.
Because, see, I have an offer too, Roy Oswalt. More money. To move. And I should be celebrating. Or eating cake. Or dancing to Cheap Trick or something. But I’m not. Because I have cleaning and packing and cleaning and packing. Is that why you’re not excited? Because you know, Boston or otherwise, you still have to pack…
I think that’s it. Baseball players just don’t want to move. Because moving is horrifying. Terrifying. Annoying. Irritating. Sweaty. Gross. Inconvenient. And heavy. Oh. And expensive. So expensive. What was I talking about again? Oh, right. Roy Oswalt. And Edwin Jackson. And the rest of the baseball players of America who don’t want to move to Boston.
It’s so expensive, that I’ve resorted to some creative, if humbling tactics. Like begging. And Craigslist ads.
But see, Roy Oswalt, you’re rich. You can pay people to do this crap for you. I looked it up. For like $1,500, you can even get someone to put everything in boxes for you. $1,500. Hmmm. What do you think they’ll do for $15? I can spare $15. $22. But that’s ALL I have in my emergency vodka fund.
Which means… I’d have to do some of this sober…
THAT could be a problem…
But not for YOU, Roy Oswalt.
You could probably drink mimosas on your porch (it’s going to have to be beer if you’re moving to Boston) and take bets on which mover splits a disk first. You could probably sit on your porch and play a rich person game. Like bridge. You could drink mimosas. Play bridge. And watch blue collar workers break themselves over your canopy bed. Do you have a canopy bed? If I was rich, I’d have a canopy bed. I think I’m going to buy a canopy bed. But I’m going to wait until I get to Raleigh so I don’t have to move it. Maybe I could donate all of my things to charity and get new things. Um. From a charity. In Raleigh. Um. Things cost money…
If you don’t want to go the professional mover route and, you know, actually accomplish something. You could hire college students. Or. Um. Me. I bet moving your things would be more interesting than moving my things. Can I have your canopy bed? You can pay me $1,500 exactly so that I can get to Raleigh.
I have a lot of girly things. Like really, really girly things. Like Miley Cyrus-esque hot pink things. I should get rid of my hot pink things. Adults don’t have hot pink things. I’m already pushing it with my Red Sox lamps…
Some free advice- NEVER watch your boyfriend’s cats for five months. Because he won’t pay you back for food like he said he would. And, when you break up and they’ve destroyed your carpet and made your house smell, the ex will just call you a bad word in a grocery store parking lot. I mean, I’ve heard that can happen. Um…
So, in relevant to everyone else news, the Sox could actually get something out of this Cubs situation. I mean, -I- doubt it… but some people actually think we’ll see a payday.
We’re NOT close to a deal with Edwin Jackson. Of course not. Because that would be the opposite of stagnancy. And stagnancy is the off-season theme. Can’t depart from the theme. Oh no.
In I’ll-Elaborate-On-This-Later news, Timmy Wakefield is thinking retirement.
We have another random bargain bullpen (seriously- what’s with this?).
Oswalt hates us.
Jenny Dell stole my job.
And I have so much fricking packing to do that it is interfering with my Sox news alerts.
Oh. And Jose Canseco STILL hasn’t e-mailed me back.
He did update his twitter feed, though.
Packing and packing and packing. Looking for music to pack to. But still on that Gavin DeGraw kick…
Do you think John Lackey’s TJ surgery means he can’t lift things? Because we could load him up like a packhorse! I mean, he’s already paid for…
Nick Cafardo and I agree on one thing today. And that is Tim Wakefield.
Who- as I’ve said before- we shouldn’t just write off- despite the imaginary walker.
Not sure it’s safe to assume that his tenure with Boston is over. Even if they don’t sign him right now, what prevents them from bringing him back in May or June or even after the All-Star break if they need a starter? He could always be one of those half-season veteran pitchers.
That’s what I see for Tim. Tim’s a utility guy and a hero. He’s not the guy you parade around the mound for a milestone. He can still serve a purpose.
And every time we write him out- he comes back as a weapon.
Well, you know. Except for that one time. Okay, that several times over the summer.
But that wasn’t his fault, see. It was the number.
Numbers are scary beasts.
So. Here’s the deal, folks. Benny C is playing it… safe? Is that even the word for this? He’s certainly playing it oppositeville. Maybe he was hanging out with Michael Hill… they were playing chess, see, when all of a sudden… the board, it got struck by lightning, right? And their hair frizzed up. Oh! And then, something magical happened like that one time on Gilligan’s Island. They switched brains!!!!!
Or, maybe Benny C doesn’t know we have money.
Maybe he doesn’t read all the disparaging comments people make about how we’re moneybaggers and buy our championships and have a bazillion dollars.
Or maybe he’s busy arguing salaries with our six unsigned arbitration-eligible players: RHP Alfredo Aceves, INF Mike Aviles, RHP Andrew Bailey, RHP Daniel Bard, OF Jacoby Ellsbury and DH David Ortiz.
Or maybe he’s still playing with the rolly chair in what used to be Theo Epstein’s office.
Are we REALLY too broke for Roy Oswalt?
I do not understand how moving around payroll works. I understand that it’s how we lost Alex Rodriguez (blessing in disguise). I understand that the internet understands it better than I do-
Can we unLackey ourselves or something? I mean, it’s not like he can play…
I am so confuzzled by our pseudo-poverty.
So, in other words- this could be as good as it gets- at least for now.
Provided we have Aceves in our rotation- how do we stack up- right now- as of Jan. 17? Because I’m not feeling the rotation strength. The real people we’ll be counting on- Lester, Beckett, Buccholz- they couldn’t pull us out of a Soxplosion. And now they’re starring in our comeback tour? I’m not feeling the pep today, folks.
In other news- it always hurts when someone moves on. You know the relationship is over. You say you’re fine. But it’s like that Gavin DeGraw song-
I think it’s pretty obvious who I’m talking about…
There are things in life you’ll remember.
Things so incredible, it takes at least six seconds for the feeling to hit your nerves.
Things that, no matter how long it takes you to get there, they’ll stick with you longer.
And last night?
Okay. Not exactly one of those things.
But close enough for this smile.
Happy Tim Wakefield Day, everyone!
Yes. So we all needed a good cry/Fiona Apple angst marathon after what can only be called the nauseating icing on a crapcupcake of a game… (Avilles, REALLY???? REALLY???)
But now that we’ve had our moment. Our breath. Our private walk punching session. Now that the Neosporin is starting to cool off our bandaged knuckles… it’s time to put things into perspective.
Sweet, sweet perspective.
And that perspective says:
At least we’re not Cleveland.
Over Labor Day weekend, 10 of the ablest minds at Grantland briefly stopped typing their own names into a Google search bar and devoted themselves to a sad question: Which city’s fan base is enduring the roughest stretch in sports right now? Where should the sympathetic among us direct our pity? Or, for the cruel at heart, our Schadenfreude?
Check it out. It’s how I almost smiled today. Thaanks, JEB.
PS- If I get off work (60 percent chance!), join me at 7 for a live victory blog. <-positivity. Let’s try it.
You know, Wakey, maybe you should stop thinking about 200 as a milestone. Shoot for 500. FIVE HUNDRED. Then, see, you have 301 games that don’t matter, really, in the grand scheme of the milestone. It’s psychological. Write it on your mirror or something. It can only help. FIVE HUNDRED.